Status: First-time applicant
Pre-MBA industry: Strategy Consulting/Investment Banking/Retail
Years of experience at time of matriculation: 6
GMAT/GRE score: 720 (V:39 Q: 49)
Undergraduate GPA: 3.84/4.00
Admitted to: Columbia, HBS
As the first person in my family to apply for business school, I felt overwhelmed by the application process and lacked confidence in my candidacy. I initially didn’t want to spend money on a consultant, given how expensive the application process already was, but I decided to do research to at least make an informed decision on my approach. After speaking with other consultants, I felt even more worried about my chances for success. Some pointed out weaknesses in my profile such my career changes early on and a decent but not stellar GMAT score for top schools. I almost self-selected out of applying to H/S/W.
An old colleague referred me to Kathryn and I immediately felt a difference in approach after my 30 minute intro call with her. She encouraged me to apply to the schools I felt passionate about and believed in me from the beginning. Kathryn and her team worked closely with me; they really encouraged me to be vulnerable and dig deeply into what matters most to me but also weren’t afraid to show tough love when I needed to completely revamp my essay. They helped me design a step by step career path, an underrated serviced for those of us who are still trying to figure out who we want to be when we grow up. I’m sure I will re-read the career narrative we came up with for years to come.
Of course, I can’t thank my advisor Leila enough for all her encouragement when I felt imposter syndrome, late nights editing my essays, and being available at the drop of a hat to help me with some of the inevitable bumps along the road. I was able to “interview” a few advisors and am so happy I got the opportunity to work with someone as empathetic and competent as Leila.
I won’t lie and say the process was easy but I can say you really get what you put in. My investment in Square One was easily the best money I’ve ever spent. I’ve been admitted to 2 of the 3 schools I worked with Square One on and am headed to HBS in the fall